Service sector getting better

The purchasing managers’ index for services, compiled by Markit for the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, jumped from 45.5 in March to 48.7 in April, only just below the 50 level signifying a return to growth. Most components of the index were strong. The other UK PMIs, for manufacturing and services, are also on a rising trend. All show that the economy is continuing to decline, but at a slower pace, a necessary precondition for a return to growth.

The Halifax house price index, however, showed a 1.7% April drop, after 1.9% in March. The rival Nationwide index has been stronger, though year-on-year falls for the two measures – 17.7% in the case of the Halifax – are similar.

Originally published at David Smith’s EconomicsUK blog and reproduced here with the author’s permission.